Theater, Puppetry

About the Production

Kwaidan is a haunting stage interpretation of three Japanese ghost stories adapted from American writer Lafcadio Hearn, taking place both in ancient times and our modern world. Kwaidan's tales evoke a beguiled world, one far removed from our pragmatic one. Layered imagery and dazzling puppetry conjure up scenes of mystery, enchantment and fright where crabs with human faces haunt turbulent shores, dead lovers appear in a McDonald’s, a blind minstrel performs before assembled ghosts, and demons call to finish business.

Production Team And Cast

Conceived, Written and Directed by

Ping Chong

Assistant Director

Ariel Goldberger

Production Manager

Liz Lee

Lighting Design

Liz Lee

Set and Production Design

Mitsuru Ishii

Sound Design

David Meschter

Puppet Design

John Ludwig

Voice Recording

Brian Hallas

Stage Manager

John A. Scott

Tour Management

Lisa Booth Management/Deirdre Valente


David Ige, Pamella O’Connor, Lee Randall, Fred C. Riley III, Don Smith, Roger Babb (Voice Over), Christopher Caines (Voice Over), Ping Chong (Voice Over), Brian Hallas (Voice Over), Jeannie Hutchins (Voice Over)

Performance History


Center for Puppetry Arts, Atlanta, GA (June 1998)


The Jim Henson International Festival of Puppet Theater, La MaMa ETC, New York, NY (September 1998)

Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN (September-October 1998)

Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL (October 1998)

Culver Academies, Culver, IN (October 1998)

Hopkins Center at Dartmouth University, Hanover, NH (October 1998)

Staller Center at SUNY Stony Brook, NY (October 1998)

Duke University, Durham, NC (October 1998)

Spoleto USA Festival, Charleston, SC (June 1999)

Nikawa Mirage Hall, Toyama, Japan (November 1999)

Helios, Toyama, Japan (November 1999)

Shinminato Culture Center, Toyama, Japan (November 1999)

Center for Puppetry Arts, Atlanta, GA (August 2000)

Lied Center of KS, Lawrence, KS (August 2000)

The Barbican Centre, London, UK (September-October 2000)

New Victory Theatre, NYC (October-November 2000)

Kennedy Center, Washington, DC (November 2000)

Byham Theatre, Pittsburgh, PA (November 2000)

Freud Playhouse, UCLA Performing Arts, CA (December 2000)


2001 UNIMA Award

Reviews And Quotes